Driving on steep island roads

I recently moved to a place in the caribbean that has very steep paved & unpaved roads, lots of potholes. I have a 2002 Chevy blazer, has 4wd, hi & low (not automatic 4wd). What is the best way to drive these roads? Someone told me its ok to leave the truck in 4wd when on “the country” roads even though they are paved but the Chevy manual says not to do this. I have been putting it in second to go down the hills. Still figuring out up hill. Any suggestions? I’m not used to driving this terrain and want to learn it right.

Follow the manual, if it’s paved don’t use 4wd. Your shifting to 2nd sound like a good idea.

As long as your vehicle has good traction in 2 wd, do not use 4 wd. They are all, shift on the fly, so it is perfectly logical to shift into 4 wd while on a steep gravel portion to prevent wheel spin. Just use it as needed and DONOT feel you have to have it in 4 wd gear all the time. On rough roads, ground clearance is more important and with the higher certer on gravity, you should be driving slower. The big advantage to 4 wd is, you don’t have to feel you must “get a run " to make a steep gravel hill…just go slow and secure. Do not leave the truck in or 4 wd. You run the risk of causing excessive wear. Use 4 wd as need…just as the manual says. People” who say" are not smarter then the manual. By all means , continue to use engine braking by down shifting to go down steep or long inclines.

What is the most common vehicle on the island? What are the “old timers” driving?

On another note, I’d recommend following the severe service section of your maintenance schedule instead of the regular section, given your description of your driving conditions.

@Sweet Life, in paradise, I assume. My question was in regard to the locals and what they have found to be the most practical and useful vehicles for the island. A John Deere goat might be the best choice while your Blazer might be a pain in the #$%^. BTW, what island is it?